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Summer coat NOT growing in

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  • Summer coat NOT growing in

    My 25 y/o Arab is shedding normally except that his summer coat doesn't seem to be growing in. At first it looked like a blanket rub but now his whole chest is just black skin with only a little bit of new growth on it.

    This is his first winter back in Colorado in 3 years and the first time he hasn't lived at home in 7 years. My other older gelding is shedding normally and they were both on the same diet all winter. I just started him on rice bran and flax seed (which normally he used to get all winter).

    He's acting totally normal, eating fine & doesn't seem itchy or upset but he looks sort of bald and I'm afraid of what he will look like when the rest of his body loses his thick winter coat.

    Any ideas?
    Ready ~ 1999-2009 ~ you were bigger than life!
    Stickers ~ 1985-2011 ~ Cody's BFF
    I miss you both very much!

  • #2
    Not at all unusual. I'm farther South than you are, so longer days, and places like the underside of the neck, forearms, gaskin, places that are typically thinner-skinned and -haired, are often bald this time of year as the Winter coat comes out faster than the Summer coat gets long enough.
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


    • #3
      That is my chestnut TB every year. His summer coat didn't get the memo. It shows up when it feels like it. Until then he is pretty much 80% bald. Not very attractive.


      • #4
        My chestnut Arab cross does this every year. This time of year, he has three "levels" of coat - winter hair that hasn't shed yet, shorter hair where I trace clipped him, and bald spots. He looks like he is suffering from mange from mid-March through mid-April. Not attractive at all, but it's worth it for the beautiful, slick summer coat that eventually grows in.


        • #5
          Originally posted by Seal Harbor View Post
          That is my chestnut TB every year. His summer coat didn't get the memo. It shows up when it feels like it. Until then he is pretty much 80% bald. Not very attractive.
          We had a chestnut TB at school that also didn't get the memo her first spring there. I think the stress of a drastic move (from one barn to another), changing to a totally different environment and the changing seasons caused her to lose it all at once like that. It did eventually come back in, and she never did that again.
 - Eventing the Welsh Cob


          • Original Poster

            OK, phew! This is new for him so it just freaked me out a little bit. Good thing it's been a warm March!

            With the darker skin exposed, do I have to worry about sunburn? He's at 6,200'.

            Thanks for the replies!
            Ready ~ 1999-2009 ~ you were bigger than life!
            Stickers ~ 1985-2011 ~ Cody's BFF
            I miss you both very much!


            • #7
              I'm not sure about sunburn, but i'd say slabbing some protectorant on couldn't hurt...

              One of the horses I ride is in this current state too. He looks like a Chinese Crested hairless dog in parts... and I second the 'mange look' that was mentioned earlier. It's awful, but at least all those baldy spots (for him: top of neck behind ears, shoulders, hindquarters, lower chest) mean theres No More Yak Attack!! Can't wait to see the sleek horse again, rather than some scientific experiment crossing a buffalo and a shetland pony.

              My labrador had this problem last spring- our first year after adopting her. She was just going bald. This dog is sooooo great, and I was in a state of alarm over her hair loss. Allergies? Skin problems? Some freakish hair eating parasite (i knew it didn't look mangey, but still, there had to be SOME reason for it!)
              Took her to the vet. MrB still laughs, because from day 1 he was telling me what, ultimately, the vet said herself: "Ummm, looks like she's just blowing her winter coat and the summer one hasnt come in yet..."


              • #8
                My 28 year old mare shed out like that last year, it did look a bit odd, but the summer hair did grow in eventually - I don't recall exactly how long.

                And we are in Florida, and I didn't notice any sunburn, I do use Ultrashield fly spray that has a sunscreen in it.
                There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams


                • #9
                  My older chestnut decided to be half bald for awhile last year! No problems...just kinda ugly!
                  Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
                  White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

                  Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.


                  • #10
                    Yeah, pretty ugly, my chestnut gelding did this for the first time last year, summer coat came in just fine. Vet said it is fairly common with chestnuts.
                    "They spend 11 months stuggling to live, and 25 years trying to die" my farrier

                    "They are dangerous on both ends and crafty in the middle"